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On the spatial coherence in mixed sound fields and its application to signal-to-diffuse ratio estimation

: Thiergart, Oliver; Galdo, Giovanni del; Habets, Emanuel A.


Journal of the Acoustical Society of America : JASA 132 (2012), Nr.4, S.2337-2346
ISSN: 0001-4966
ISSN: 1520-8524
Fraunhofer IIS ()

Many applications in spatial sound recording and processing model the sound scene as a sum of directional and diffuse sound components. The power ratio between both components, i.e., the signal-to-diffuse ratio (SDR), represents an important measure for algorithms which aim at performing robustly in reverberant environments. This contribution discusses the SDR estimation from the spatial coherence between two arbitrary first-order directional microphones. First, the spatial coherence is expressed as function of the SDR. For most microphone setups, the spatial coherence is a complex function where both the absolute value and phase contain relevant information on the SDR. Secondly, the SDR estimator is derived from the spatial coherence function. The estimator is discussed for different practical microphone setups including coincident setups of arbitrary first-order directional microphones and spaced setups of identical first-order directional microphones. An unbiased SDR estimation requires noiseless coherence estimates as well as information on the direction-of-arrival of the directional sound, which usually has to be estimated. Nevertheless, measurement results verify that the proposed estimator is applicable in practice and provides accurate results.